Gift giving is fun. It is even more fun if one is not worried about having spent the car payment money to buy the gifts or having run up a huge credit card expense while shopping. The holidays and other special occasions are more easily savored if one is not stressed about finding an affordable gift that is appropriate. A key to avoiding the expense and stress is to shop all year long, watching for mega sales on items that fit into your gift-giving plan, and then store them away like squirrels do nuts for winter.
I’ve almost finished my gift shopping for the year, and this includes gifts for Christmas. With us having six children, five of whom are married, seven grandchildren, our siblings, and our parents/step-parents for whom to shop, not counting any other people, or wedding or baby showers that come up during the year, buying birthday, anniversary, Mothers’ Day, Fathers’ Day, and Christmas gifts can get rather exhausting and expensive. Thankfully, genetics (a lot of Scottish in this girl’s lineage) and life’s circumstances have taught me how to be frugal rather than cheap.
Before moving, I had a storage area where I would store my frugal-shopping gift stash; since moving these-not-yet-given-away gifts are stored in boxes in our closet. This past week, while our bed was stripped, I “dumped” all of my frugal shopping-treasures onto our bed to sort and re-pack by person and occasion. Please note that the box at top left is filled with Bath and Body shower gels, lotions, and soaps (though you can’t see all), yet I did not pay more than $3 for any one item in the box; all were purchased at Bath and Body. The toys at bottom left are Melissa & Doug toys, not cheap discount store baubles. The pink insulated vest was $3 at Old Navy.
After taking inventory and sorting gifts, I made a mental list of people for whom I needed to shop and for what occasion. The next step was bargain shopping, stacking sales with coupon codes and free shipping when possible.
Not being a big fan of wasting gas running around town to see who might have what I’d like on clearance or whether or not the size I need is still available at Mega Store A’s one-day sale, I prefer to shop online. With my trusty laptop in my lap and several tabs open to compare and also look for coupon codes available, I began shopping.
Below is the savings and actual cost of my last three online shopping ventures.
While not all of the items have arrived at this time, here is a picture of what came in yesterday. There are actually a total of four of the Nordic pans like the one shown on the far left. Everything pictured, and those yet to come (about 3 more boxes to arrive due to split shipments), were purchased from either Kohl’s or Amazon. I’m pretty much done with shopping for the year!
How do you give nice gifts without spending more than budget allows?
Have a blessed and happy day!